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Mistaken Plane Identities

Heroes Remember

Mistaken Plane Identities

From the perspective I had at that point, yes I understood far more and was able to see far more than anyone on the ground. When you're on the ground, which is a terrible environment to be in, you are focussed on what's ahead of you and who's shooting at you and the terrain that's just within your vision. But in the air from my perspective, which a fighter pilot, Spitfire or bomber pilot didn't have, we had a unique ability because of that position at that time that I'm sure no one else had. It was, it was really quite different. The fighter pilots were up in their squadrons circling at 10,000 feet or wherever they were and some of them were at our level. But by and large we had no idea of the overall complexity of the battle, no idea of the overall intentions or who was where or we just simply knew that we were on the beaches of the British, Canadian and British. We had no opportunity to go over the American beaches and we, strangely enough the aircraft kept quite separate, and for which I thank god because the American fighter pilots would shoot down anything that looked like a German air plane and our Mustangs had camouflage and they looked very much like the ME-109.

Mr. Rohmer talks about the huge amount of activity that he could see as a Recce Pilot. He also talks about how their Mustangs were sometimes mistaken for ME-109s.

Richard Heath Rohmer

Major General Rohmer was born in Hamilton, Ontario on January 24, 1924. He enlisted with the Royal Canadian Air Force on his eighteenth birthday. He had received some training in Canada before being shipped overseas to Bournemouth for further training on both Spitfires and Mustangs. He chose to fly a Mustang and was finally able to get into operations in the Fall of 1944.

General Rohmer provided reconnaissance for D-Day, the Falaise Gap and the Liberation of the Netherlands.

After the war, General Rohmer instructed Spitfire pilots on how to attack in the air at Gunnery Instructor School and later went back to college in Ontario, Canada. After graduating from college he went on to practice law. General Rohmer has received several awards throughout his illustrious career including the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Canada Defence Medal and is an Officer of the Order of Canada just to name a few. General Rohmer is also a best selling author.

Meta Data
Veterans Affairs Canada
Person Interviewed:
Richard Heath Rohmer
War, Conflict or Mission:
Second World War
Battle of Normandy
Air Force
403 Squadron

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